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New Zealand is considered as an exotic country for people in most parts of the world. It’s not one of the top places one would choose for a vacation, but there isn’t a justified reason for this. The natural beauties of this country are remarkable indeed. Of course, since you’re planning a trip this far away, this activity is not to be taken lightly. It needs attention and research in order to use your time there in the best possible way. You will want to see both natural and historical sights, but at the same time, you shouldn’t be too stressed and have a very strict and packed itinerary. You need a loose plan that gives you enough freedom to stop and smell the flowers at any location you like and we’re here to give you a few hints.
When to visit?
Have in mind that the seasons are reversed from Europe and North America, so make sure to visit at the season that you find most suitable. Summer in New Zealand isn’t very hot, it’s about 25 degrees Celsius and it’s a very popular time for tourists, as the temperature is hot enough to go sightseeing and enjoying taking walks, but not too hot so one cannot function properly. Autumn and spring are a bit risky as anything goes. If you’re lucky, it will be the best since there are much less tourists and the weather could be the same as in summertime. On the other hand, if you’re a fan of skiing and cold weather, winter is the best time for you to visit and enjoy the snow and winter sports.
Choose your weapon
Depending of how long of a trip you have and how far you plan to go, you have various options when it comes to traveling inland. You can fly, go by bus, train or car. Of course, you need some sort of a trade-off between the affordability and speed, since you probably don’t want to spend most of your trip inside a vehicle. If you decide to go by car, you could find a nice deal in New Zealand. For instance, upon landing, visit a car rental near Christchurch airport and start your journey fresh and ready. You could also transport your own car, but that seems a bit excessive and not cost-effective. However, if you decide to only stay in one area, public transportation may be just enough for the needs of your trip.
Create a route
Once you’ve chosen your means of transportation, it’s time to start pinning the map. Naturally, you need to do some research and mark the places you’d like to visit, as well as the order that makes the most sense. Since you need to take time and money into account when listing places, this may be a bit overwhelming. This is why you should start by marking anything you like that you read or heard of. After that, find a way to connect the dots in a way that matches transportation best and then turn to budget estimation and time management. If you decide to take the car, you need to check the maps for time estimation of rides as they may differ from expected ones with respect to distance.
If you do choose to start your journey in Christchurch, there are beautiful wildlife reserves and parks you can visit. The botanic gardens are also worth seeing. One of the most popular sights here is also the International Antarctic Centre where you can see penguins. Your next stop could either be Picton or Dunedin. Both car rides are about four and a half hours long and you can choose between natural beauties or some historical sights such as castles and museums, respectively.
Dunedin is a three-hour ferry ride away from Wellington, which is the capital of this exotic country. Wellington offers a lot of sightseeing material, so you might consider staying here for a few days. On the other hand, three and a half hours away from Dunedin, you can find the beautiful Queenstown and Queenstown Bay, where you’ll be able to completely relax.
New Zealand is a fun place to explore, so you’ll probably have fun, regardless of how you plan the trip. It also depends on your own personality and goals. In any case, you should keep a loose plan and give yourself space to spontaneously make decisions along the way, as the beauty of this country’s areas will dictate your tempo.